Former President Donald Trump raised quite a few brows during his Pennsylvania rally on Saturday night, possibly firing his first major 2024 campaign shot against what’s expected to be a potential top challenger, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R).
According to the Washington Examiner, Trump used a moment during the rally to nickname the popular Florida governor “Ron DeSanctimonious.”
The nickname was nowhere near being fun or endearing, as the Merriam-Webster definition of the word sanctimonious is “hypocritically pious or devout.”
The shocking nickname, which Trump hands out to his political opponents and enemies, came as the 2022 midterms inch closer.
Trump’s apparent insult of the Republican governor sparked intense backlash on social media. A number of high-profile conservative influencers were not happy with the development, especially as Republicans can’t afford a civil war for the next two years.
Neither is perfect, but I’d vote for Trump or DeSantis in 2024.
I don’t see how Trump attacking Desantis before a major mid-term is beneficial to Trump or America at large.
That is all.
— Steven Crowder (@scrowder) November 6, 2022
Trump missed the mark with the quip about DeSantis tonight. It’s four days before the Midterm; the Governor is facing re-election and is a MAGA ally. No need for friendly fire. Keep the guns targeted on the Left.
— Election Wizard 🇺🇸 (@ElectionWiz) November 6, 2022
Others pointed out that it appears the media would love nothing more than to cover a Trump/DeSantis war for the next two years.
The media desperately wants a Trump/DeSantis war and for some inexplicable reason Trump is giving it to them.
He still doesn’t understand that they’ll never love him no matter what he does.
America First conservatives should present an impenetrable unified front.
— John Cardillo (@johncardillo) November 6, 2022
Trump seemed to double down on sparking a rivalry between him and DeSantis, as he repeated several polls that show him as a clear winner in a 2024 Republican primary.
“Everybody, I promise you in the next very, very, very short period of time you’re going to be so happy,” Trump said, adding to a long string of hints that he’ll soon announce his candidacy for 2024.
Only time will tell what happens, but many conservatives agree that party infighting is not the way forward. Hopefully, the two Republican powerhouses can figure something out to promote party unification.